Performance Testing Mobile Applications before Release Can Save Thousands and Your Company’s Reputation
Most companies today recognize the importance of mobile applications and are quickly jumping on the mobile bandwagon. Some are so eager to release mobile apps that they are skipping a crucial step — proper testing. Everyone knows how frustrating it is to download apps that don’t live up to their promises. The more entrenched in mobility we become, the less patience we have for slow, buggy apps. If you look at any mobile app store – Apple or Android – there are hundreds of apps that have two star ratings because they launch and crash right away or they take forever to load.
If enterprises allow the time for proper testing, they’d find the bugs that are preventing apps from performing as planned. Letting these bugs sneak into enterprise apps can lead to lost time and development dollars, decreased employee efficiency, a poor reputation for quality.
Why are so many companies missing the mark? Far too many are skipping the testing process and relying on the crowd to give them feedback. In fact, according to a recent survey from the Software Development Times, 42% of companies are not testing mobile apps before release. Of those who are taking the time to test, only 35.8% use an official test team while the majority relies on developers themselves.
When you look at the number of apps that are uninstalled after their first attempted use, and combine that with the very real risks that under-performing and unsecured apps can have for enterprise users – like banks and financial institutions – it’s clear the industry as a whole needs to be dealing with these issues before release and much earlier in the app development life cycle.
Performance Testing Mobile Applications is Essential to Stay Relevant
Unlike web and desktop applications, mobile applications need to be updated frequently and maintained in order to function correctly. Although there are updates and changes to web and desktop computing platforms, they pale in comparison to the changes in the mobile market. All of these changes lead to more possibilities for app performance issues.
Operating systems for mobile devices are updated one to three times per year. Combine that number with the multitude of phones being released each quarter. It’s no wonder that many companies opt to skip rigorous testing and hope that the market will help develop the app.
The problem is multiplied for organizations that embrace “bring your own device” (BYOD). Apps that are essential for work need to function on a variety of devices and BYOD means an influx of device types and operating systems.
Errors are Easy to Miss, But Fixing Them Later Can Cost More
On top of the complications from the number of devices on the market and the constantly updated operating systems, it can be easy to miss a defect during the development process. If a problem slips through during development without performance testing mobile applications, it can be very costly for your company —both financially and in terms of negativity related to the corporate brand.
For example, if the login functionality of a website doesn’t work or has a timeout problem due to poor performance, that defect could really cost you. There’s going to be a lot of rework after the app has reached the market which can break trust between your company and the users. This applies whether you’re developing for a consumer or business user – if your app isn’t functioning, you’re going to lose your audience.
There’s a saying that goes like this, “it costs $1 to fix a bug in development, $10 to fix it in testing and $100 to fix it in production.” Performance testing mobile applications to ensure performance is in line with plans can save thousands by stopping problems and alerting developers well before the application is used in the market.
If organizations do not have the time or resources to do a full-on performance test, it is essential that the testing team uses transaction timers within a functional test at the very least. These timers can alert the tester that something may have slowed down by providing a benchmark for subsequent test runs. Knowing how your app is performing from application, operating system, or hardware changes can help save money by preventing issues making it through to production.
Long story short, more testing can lead to better functioning apps, which leads to fewer problems later on. Developers need to be careful during the development process because there is a lot that can be missed. Automating mobile app testing and including performance benchmarks can help catch and fix problems well before an app is deployed and preserve a company’s reputation.
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